Source: Sports & Fitness Industry Association

Philadelphia, PA - January 16, 2013 - More than 40 individuals representing 20 companies gathered for the inaugural SFIA Lacrosse Council meeting held at the US Lacrosse Convention in Philadelphia. With the tremendous growth in lacrosse participation over the past several years, several brands indicated the desire to bring the industry together with the purpose of helping continue to grow the game lacrosse and to deal with many of the challenges associated with building on this momentum. Topics discussed at the initial meeting included presentations by US Lacrosse and the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) on rules and standards issues relating to the Women's and Men's game, a review of the recent National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE) lacrosse ball standard changes and an overview of injury data by Ann Carpenetti, Managing Director of Game Administration with US Lacrosse.

"While competing vigorously in the marketplace, we share common values and interests in helping to make the great and growing game of lacrosse even greater," said Jim Archibald, Vice President of STX and Chair of the SFIA Lacrosse Council. "Through the Council, we will be able to consider and respond to many of the issues of interest to the lacrosse, sport and fitness communities."

"US Lacrosse is thankful for the SFIA's leadership in establishing a Lacrosse Council, and we look forward to deeper collaboration with the lacrosse industry on initiatives focused on the responsible growth of lacrosse," Steve Stenersen, CEO of US Lacrosse, added.

During the meeting, SFIA staff shared research indicating lacrosse was poised for continued growth given the changes in the population over the past few years. While the game remains a force in terms of participation in the Middle Atlantic and South Atlantic corridors, participation in the sport has more than doubled since 2008 in the Mountain and Pacific regions of the country.

"It is clear from the turnout at the Lacrosse Council meeting on Saturday that the lacrosse industry sees the value in bringing the industry together to discuss the future of the sport," said Jonathan Michaels, SFIA Director of Membership and Business Development. "Moving forward, the Lacrosse Council will facilitate dialogue related to the issues that are most important and of mutual interest to all of the organizations connected to the sport…grow the game initiatives and strengthening the relationships between all parties connected to the lacrosse industry are priorities."

The Sports & Fitness Industry Association, the number one source for sport and fitness research, is the leading global trade association of manufacturers, retailers, and marketers in the sports products and fitness industry. SFIA seeks to promote sports and fitness participation as well as industry vitality through research, thought leadership, public affairs, public affairs, and member services. More information can be found at www.sfia.org. Frequently Asked Questions addressing the rebranding process can be found at FAQ's.

Emily Attwood is Managing Editor of Athletic Business.